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The Best Hardwood Floors For Arizona

by Arizona Hardwood Floor & Supply • August 28, 2023

In the vast world of home design and remodeling, one choice stands prominent among homeowners—selecting the right flooring. Hardwood floors, with their timeless charm and elegance, are often at the forefront of this choice. But in a market flooded with a plethora of options like vinyl flooring, laminate flooring, and the age-old comfort of carpet, the decision-making process can become daunting. Each material offers its unique blend of aesthetics, functionality, and price, presenting homeowners with a myriad of possibilities tailored to their preferences and budgets.

Best Hardwood Floors For Arizona

However, the decision isn't merely about aesthetics. While the beauty of engineered hardwood floors is undeniable, it's crucial to consider the practicality and longevity of the material, especially in specific climates like Arizona. Similarly, vinyl flooring offers durability and ease of maintenance at a potentially more affordable price point, while laminate flooring can mimic the look of real wood or stone without the associated costs. On the other hand, carpets, though sometimes overlooked in modern designs, bring warmth and coziness that other flooring options might not offer. Understanding the advantages, limitations, and costs of each option will ensure that your home is not only beautiful but also functional and cost-effective.

Arizona, known for its iconic landscapes and sweltering temperatures, presents unique challenges for homeowners, especially when it comes to flooring. If you've ever wondered about the best hardwood flooring installation for your Arizona home, this guide is here to answer all your questions.

Understanding Arizona's Climate

In the realm of hardwood floors, understanding the specific climatic conditions of an area is pivotal. Arizona, while renowned for its picturesque sunsets and expansive deserts, also bears a climate that can be challenging for certain flooring options. Prolonged exposure to such arid conditions can lead some hardwood floors to shrink or warp, affecting the top layer's integrity. Tile flooring, on the other hand, is naturally resilient to such conditions and is a preferred choice by many in the state. However, with the right guidance from a reputable flooring company, homeowners can still enjoy the luxury and aesthetics of hardwood. By opting for specific treatments and finishes or considering other hardwood alternatives that mimic its beauty, one can ensure longevity and durability in their chosen flooring. As always, weighing the benefits and limitations of each option becomes essential, and seeking advice from professionals can make things a lot smoother in the decision-making process.

Subfloor Specifications

For homes built with truss or plywood subfloors, a 3/4" solid hardwood floor is an excellent choice, allowing you to nail the floor directly onto the subfloor. But there's a catch. A majority of Arizona homes, particularly those in the bustling Phoenix area, feature concrete subfloor.

To lay a solid ¾” hardwood floor on concrete, you'd need to install a 5/8” plywood subfloor. This additional layer stabilizes the hardwood, preventing it from expanding and contracting due to temperature fluctuations. However, it also raises the height of your flooring, necessitating adjustments to doors and door jambs and potentially complicating transitions to other surfaces.

Why Engineered Hardwood Is the Top Choice

Given these considerations, engineered hardwood flooring emerges as the top contender for Arizona homes. But what is it?

Engineered hardwood has a robust plywood core with a beautifully finished veneer on top. This construction offers a double advantage: it stabilizes the hardwood, reducing expansion and contraction, and allows for direct gluing to concrete surfaces. This direct bond simplifies transitions to other surfaces like tile.

Another bonus? Some engineered hardwoods can be refinished, breathing new life into worn floors. And given its popularity, engineered hardwood accounts for a whopping 85% of flooring installations in the Phoenix area, while other flooring types like luxury vinyl plank, laminate, and solid hardwood represent just 15%.

Styles and Textures Galore

Engineered hardwood is not only functional but also versatile. For contemporary homes, a smooth, clean grade of hardwood flooring lends an air of sophistication. These floors have fewer color variations and knots, offering a consistent hue and feel. However, if your home leans towards a more traditional décor, rustic wider planks might be more up your alley. Rustic grades, characterized by larger knots and diverse colors, showcase the wood's natural beauty, including the heart and sapwood distinctions. Many rustic floors undergo hand scraping or wire brushing during milling, adding an additional layer of texture that also helps in camouflaging scratches and damages.

The Bottom Line

For Arizonians, engineered hardwood flooring is the real MVP. It's cost-effective, as it saves you from installing an additional plywood subfloor, and it simplifies the flooring transition process. Moreover, its versatile styles mean there's something for everyone, irrespective of your home's décor.

Interested in exploring more? Come down to one of our Arizona Showrooms in Phoenix, Scottsdale, or Gilbert. Alternatively, you can browse our extensive collection online at azwood.com or ring us at 623-742-(Wood) 9663 for personalized assistance.